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starship-design: ORION

Hi Folks,

There is a lot of talk in this list about a starship driven by nuclear 
explosions behind it. OK so far, but has anyone of you thought about the 
problem of shielding the drive itselve against the ENORMOUS heat 
generated by nuclear bombs? I simply cannot imagine any material able of 

a) generating enough resistance to push a ship in the range of hundreds of 
millions of tons 

		----> AND <----

b) NOT BEING VAPORIZED completely after 1,000 explosions!!! (or even less...)

Can anyone of you explain?

Christoph Kulmann